Wednesday, 13 June 2018

A June wedding

The ceilidh was at Quarry Bank Mill. Enthusiastic dancers, the venue had rightly decided that the portable dance floor wouldn't be big enough so they pushed the tables back and we danced on the carpet. As we were lining up for the first dance it became obvious that the tables need to go back even further. Nice when people leap up to dance. Bridegroom Phil's family was from Belfast and obviously knew what they were doing, but those who hadn't danced before joined in and enjoyed it too.

May. A birthday party and a folk festival

I called with Hi Jinks for a birthday party of two members of a family who we had met at the Burn's Night ceilidh we played for. Dad was 50, daughter 16. The daughter has been coming along to Stockton Heath dance club and bringing various friends and family members, so some of the club dancers came along to celebrate with her.

Then as usual the late may bank holiday weekend was Chester folk festival. I called a family ceilidh. The sun was shining and there was a circus skills tent offering rival attractions, but those who were there joined in with gusto. And I enjoyed other ceilidhs, concerts, music sessions and singing for the rest of the weekend

April - an unusual venue and event

I've called ceilidhs in churches and church halls before now, but never in a change-of-use church which had become a Buddhist Centre.
I've called at birthday parties, again this was a celebration with a difference.
The organiser was remembering her father on his birthday. He had been one of the founders of the centre in High Lane, Chorlton.
It was a happy community event, the guests brought food to eat after the buddhist chanting, then joined in the dancing - one of his other interests.

Friday, 23 March 2018

Play the Wild Rover.

St Patrick's night brought the chance to work with JiggityPig.
We started the evening with a display from Celtic Toes Dance School. Then had some good Irish tunes from the band, a hotpot, some raucous singing and a crowd of dancers dipping and diving, circling and swinging (though I neither expected nor got those fancy Irish steps we'd seen earlier).
Then scraped the snow & ice off the windscreen before driving home.

Sunday, 11 March 2018

Expect the unexpected - tale of 6 dances

I had prepared a programme to call at Adlington club. The Met Office had warned about snow but 'I'll believe it when I see it'. I never did see it, really, but nearer Manchester it was bad. So after thinking about the uncertain forecast and the long drive home I found a local substitute. I suspected there would be hardly anyone there and I was right - 7 including 3 callers.
That week there was another club evening cancelled due to snow plus a Saturday dance.
Last Wednesday the snow had gone - so went and danced at Adlington, but the heap of snow still on the verge showed how bad it had been.

Thursday I was expecting an evening in but had a phone call from another caller in the morning, could I call at a wedding as he wasn't well. Interesting, as I hadn't worked with the band. Rob emailed me their set list which I was reading when another email arrived from him. The band leader had also found a caller, so I got my evening in, after all.

Yesterday I was looking forward to dancing to Knotted Chord with my favourite caller Rhodri Davies. Had a phone call mid afternoon - he was in hospital, could I bring some dances to call. So those dances I had prepared for Adlington were useful after all. Knotted Chord were a joy to work with. Maria called some interesting dances too.
And it was a relief to see Rhodri posting on facebook to say that he is recovering.

Saturday, 17 February 2018

Nice to be enjoyed

The Hi Jinks bookings for Burns nights are repeated every year, we must be doing something right!
And as a spin-off we are being booked for a joint 16th / 50th birthday party.

2017 ends, 2018 begins

2017 ended with a couple of family parties, both arranged at the last minute. A 60th birthday with Millstone band and a Diamond wedding with Celtic Knot. Both good evenings, good music from fun bands to work with, and dance floors full of all ages enjoying a family occasion.
The year always starts with Burns Nights and Holly Holy Day. Last Saturday I was in Warrington with Hi Jinks, another full floor of good dancers (+ haggis / piper etc). A fundraiser for Oasis which raised over £700. Next weekend I shall start the day in Nantwich, commemorating a Civil War battle with the band Forlorn Hope in the museum. 17th century tunes played C17 kinds of instruments, and a little C17 dancing. Then on the Stand Golf club for another Burns Night with High Jinks. Another crowd who seem to enjoy themselves every year.

And I look forward to a St Patricks Night ceilidh with an Irish band I've not worked with for a while.

And between all that dancing and calling at weekly club nights, and enjoying the bands and callers at Saturday dances.
I've also joined a choir Tatton Singers, which I am enjoying - but oh, I do have to work at it. Really shows me what it's like for beginner dancers!